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Crypto Pioneers Differ on Cloud-Computing Risks

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A group of pioneers in the security field, whose work in encryption is used to protect Internet data and communications every day, spoke recently about the state of cyber security and the topic that dominated was cloud computing. "Cloud computing is a challenge to security, but one that can be overcome," said Whitfield Diffie, chief security officer at Sun Microsystems. "I believe cloud computing will get to [the point] where no real program . . . will be done anymore on the computers of the company that's doing it," he said.

"I'm worried about cloud computing," said Adi Shamir, a computer science professor at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel. While a virus or other problem on a desktop computer can be a big annoyance, computation centers in hosted computing could spread problems more widely, he said.

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